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Surprise, Surprise: Richard Branson’s Pro-Am Golf Tournament Is Opulent

Surprise, Surprise: Richard Branson’s Pro-Am Golf Tournament Is Opulent:
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V.I.P: Those three golden letters that can elevate pretty much any experience from meh to memorable. But there are a select few experiences—available only to a select few—that take the concept of “VIP” treatment to entirely another level. From sports events to music festivals to fine dining, we’ve curated the most lavish, over-the-top VIP packages from around the world to see how the one-percenters live…and frivolously blow their cash.

NAME: Necker Open (August 27th-September 1st, 2015)
POSH CRED: The “world’s most exclusive” Pro-Am golf tournament
COST: $80,000
WHAT PUSHES IT OVER THE TOP: When it comes to flashy sports outings, Richard Branson could have written the book (or, at the very least, the “fore”-word). Alongside his annual Necker Cup tennis tourney going on its fourth year, 2015 marks the debut of the Necker Open—a five-day Pro-Am golf event that kicks off in Georgia and concludes in the British Virgin Islands on Branson’s own private Necker Island. The inaugural 32 amateur participants will play alongside not only Branson, but also PGA Tour legends like Greg Norman and Tommy Fleetwood, as well as, yes, Chevy Chase. (Insert gratuitous “Caddyshack” quote or joke here.)

The cost to get in the swing of things? A cool $80,000. Festivities start at a five-star resort in Georgia, which will host the first two days of competition and 36 holes of golf. Though there will be no shortage of tee times, guests shouldn’t expect much teetotaling—as one would expect with the price tag, the itinerary also includes cocktail gatherings and meals a-plenty.

Photo courtesy of Amy Trahant / Take Aim Photography

Photo courtesy of Amy Trahant / Take Aim Photography

After the golf action concludes, participants will board a private jet to Necker Island for an all-inclusive three-night stay. Ever the host, Branson is set to act as the group’s troop leader, hosting a welcome reception and shepherding beach activities like a sailboat race, paddle boarding, kite boarding, snorkeling, and tennis.

Those who need to redeem themselves from a poor tournament performance can do so in the “Necker 9,” a series of unique golf challenges on the island. After all, for $80,000, everyone deserves a chance to be a Spackler-style “Cinderella story.”

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